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7 hints to keep your business running

Date posted: 29.06.2016 | Author: Harry Bovensmann

7 hints will keep your business running even in hard times. Business owners face a nerve-wracking time as economic and political crises continue to create a perfect storm fuelled by a weak rand, high labour costs and rising inflation. However, with some planning they can batten down the hatches and ride out the storm with their books firmly in the black.:

He outlined seven points for businesses to take into account:

1. Separate your business ‘must haves’ from your ‘nice to haves’

This might sound obvious, but it is worth thinking carefully about where you cut costs in tough times and where you keep spending. Spending on ‘must haves’ should include the assets needed to produce value, product, service and innovation, research and development, customer service training and staffing, as well as upskilling of employees.

2. Cash is king

In tough economic times, your pricing strategy is everything. And cash, as always, beats terms. So consider offering your clients discounts for cash – but don’t discount for the sake of it, do this only as part of a carefully considered pricing strategy.

3. Get tough on credit sales

For credit sales, businesses will need to implement a stringent policy to ensure that customers can service their debt.

4. Optimise the processes in your business

Spend time identifying any inefficiencies in the business and working out systems and processes to streamline these. Here, researching international best practices, working with specialists and networking with other business owners can offer invaluable insights.

5. Technology is your friend

There are so many ways that technology can make your business more visible, more efficient, more modern and more attractive. Don’t be afraid to embrace the change that good use of technology can make in your business. Keep your eyes open for advancements which will lead to your own advancement.

6. Upsell to your existing clients

It is cheaper and easier to sell to your existing clients than it is to attract new ones. By gaining a deep understanding of your clients’ wants and needs, you can tailor products and solutions to these and increase their spend with you in the process.

7. Manage bad debt proactively

Rather than getting a big fright when clients don’t pay you, factor bad debt into your business as a potential risk and plan for it. Chase up on unpaid bills early and offer payment terms to help clients settle debt when necessary.

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